Track of the Week: “Summer Skin,” by Death Cab for Cutie

Track of the WeekThe Weather Channel’s website says it’s going to feel like 103° today. When I read that, two things came to mind. The first thing that popped in my mind, of course, was “Holy cannolis that’s hot!” Secondly, I thought of “Summer Skin” by Death Cab for Cutie.

In exemplary Death Cab for Cutie form, this song features layers of instruments performing simple but effective parts. The tapestry of the parts is expertly woven to create a mournful, hazy summertime vignette about love gained and lost with the change of the seasons.

The snare drum sizzles like baking asphalt. The lo-fi synth pad howls like boiling water. The piano’s abbreviated phrasing sounds like the sob-stifled ramblings of a heartbroken lover. Every part was written to exude summer’s heat and sorrowful reminiscence.

For more information about me and the guitar lessons that I give in and around Baltimore, visit

3 responses to “Track of the Week: “Summer Skin,” by Death Cab for Cutie

  1. This track, and the entire CD for that matter, contain all the key elements that I look for in music. Lyrics that aren’t too cryptic, but instead, paint distinct images. It also has that melancholy feel to it, that for some reason I’m drawn to lately. The vocals fit the melodies, and blend effortlessly with the instrumentation. No, it doesn’t have the production values of say a Steely Dan recording, but as you pointed out, Death Cab was not going for that. Upon critical listening, the CD is a sort of somber reflection. A very mood inspiring CD, and great track of the week. Like the really hot weather of late, it really makes an impression on you!

    • I agree, the recording quality isn’t nearly as polished as a Steely Dan album, but what it? I think it is a testament to the music when recording quality is our only complaint.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s